Help – my car is trying to kill me!

A driver in the USA barely escaped alive when his Tesla model S nearly steered into an oncoming vehicle per autopilot.

Not quite perfect yet. A driver in the USA barely escaped alive when his Tesla model S nearly steered into an oncoming vehicle per autopilot. The autopilot tried to kill him, laments the almost crash pilot as the automobile trade publication kfz-Betrieb reports. But even though driverless cars are not entirely perfect yet, we already know today what defines a risk-free assistance system.

Hands on the wheel

Tesla itself warns drivers against taking their hands off the wheel. The autopilot function in the Tesla vehicles is only designed for simple roads to date, that is to say for straight stretches.

Here too the rule is: No napping in the back seat!

A few years will pass before this is possible, since the electronic horizon is not yet present in all vehicles by far.

When we got the idea for the MapTrip Road Companion app, we realised ourselves how much unused potential this new technology harbours and how little of it is used in vehicles so far. We developed our own electronic horizon with the goal to change all that.

Successfully. The MapTrip Road Companion makes it possible to reliably predict concrete hazards along the route, such as dangerously tight curves, wrong-way drivers, congestion up ahead, construction or uphill and downhill sections before they come within range. With corresponding warnings, the app alerts the driver to upcoming road developments so driving behaviour can be adjusted accordingly.

And the feet on the dashboard

The electronic horizon is a basic requirement for driverless cars and still offers plenty of room for improvements.

A forward-looking driver assistance system with detailed route information in the form of digital maps, preparing the vehicle for upcoming situations, is only the first step. Automatic speed regulation, optimised braking and headlight beams that adapt to follow the roadway are merely the beginning.

While cameras and sensors in the car are still being used today, a combination with cloud-based information increasingly gains importance going forward. That is the only way to correctly predict spontaneous traffic developments and develop automatic warning systems that improve road safety. Risk-free autonomous vehicles are at the end of this journey.

In the coming years, the electronic horizon will definitely undergo further development and establish itself as standard equipment in vehicles. We have already laid the foundation with the MapTrip Road Companion.

Test drive the future today – MapTrip Road Companion is available free of charge from the Google PlayStore.

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